New York– Former Australian national team coach Brett Brown believes the Boomers are primed to make an assault on the medal rounds in Rio at this summer’s Olympic Games. Brown, currently the 76ers’ head coach, told starting5online in Brooklyn that roster continuity is one of the biggest advantages the team has.
“I think it [roster] is more talented, and it is deeper [than the one he coached in 2012],” said Brown. “The thing that stands out the most is there’s continuity. When you look at the trend of Olympic Games, and you look at the history of people that win medals — we saw years ago, out of the blue, Argentina just burst onto the scene and beat the United States. You’ve seen the steady, over the past three Olympic Games, the domination of Spain.
“I think you’re really gonna see an emerging Canadian team, when you really start looking at the youth and talent in Canada, that will be a part of the next three Olympic games. France — the growth of Tony Parker’s group. All those programs have been generational; you hit on a generation and they play and stay together …. the Australians have done that. So, not only is it the deepest Australian team they’ve ever had, they’ve played with each other going on now two Olympic Games, so that’s [already] a span of eight years.”
Australia has participated in the most men’s Olympic basketball tournaments without having won a medal (13), and has been knocked out in the quarter-final stage of the last two Olympic Games. Brown said he had seen last week’s draw which pitted the Boomers in the same group as the Americans. The 2016 draw ensures that if Australia move through to the finals stage of the competition, the earliest they could face the US side will be in the semi-finals.
“I think that the draw is good for them. I think that the country is in good hands with their coach, and I don’t remember the talent being any better than it is now,” Brown said.
The Australians were drawn into Group A alongside the USA, Venezuela, China and two qualifying teams yet to be decided.
Their schedule so far includes the game against the USA on August 10, China on August 12 and Venezuela on August 14, with games on August 6 and August 8 to be decided at a later date.
Feature image via: Reuters